Maximin Grünhauser Abtsberg, Spätlese, Fuder 24, 2011

  Von Schubert

The result of a November picking where some berries had developed a very healthy form of botrytis. Initially closed and reticent on the nose, touches of botrytised apricot on the palate, aeration quickly unveils complex, multi-layered flavours. A very serious Spatlese indeed, full, deep and smooth, bright salty mineral and citrus rind notes compliment the stone fruit and fruit blossom honey character. Intense, flavoursome but elegant and complete. In monastic times the wine from the Abtsberg (Abbott's hill) was reserved exclusively for the Abbotts. It is sheer and benefits from a sotherly exposure to the sun. The soil is predominantly blue slate, akin to the Mosel, the wines are earthy, powerful and very mineral, whilst often a little closed when young a great Abtsberg can age well over decades. The main harvest started the 3rd week of October, must weights were already high much earlier than this but it was necessary to wait for complete ripeness in the grapes before picking. The wines are fermented naturally, using indigenous yeasts, and are aged in old oak cask. The estate's wines combine strong personality with great finesse.

Contains Sulphites.

About Von Schubert

This estate is centred on a former monastic Manor House at the foot of the Maximin Grünhaus hill close to a narrow tributary of the Mosel, the Ruwer. This towering hill is responsible for world famous wines of Carl von Schubert whose sensible attitude to vineyard management, careful selection and yield restriction result in classic examples of Ruwer style wines that are at bold, racy and mineral. Three of the region’s top vineyards are all situated on this hill. The Herrenberg occupies most of this,producing taut, mineral wines, whilst the other two comprise Bruderberg and Abstberg. In the monastic period the former provided the brothers’ tipple whilst the venerable, opulent Abstberg provided the extravagant imbibing requirements of the Abbotts.

Appellation: Ruwer

The Ruwer is a mere stream leading into the meandering Mosel, but a mere stream flanked by steep slopes of red and blue slate and riesling vines. The coolness of the area means that all but the most quality conscious growers can achieve ripeness year in year out, but those that do are able to fashion some of the most delicate examples of Riesling to be found.

Grape Type: Riesling

One of the world’s noblest grape varieties, Riesling produces scented, refreshing, mineral wines from dry to lusciously sweet. Its bad reputation, tarnished by the cloying and completely unrelated Liebfraumilch, is one of the wine world’s great injustices. Its heartland is the steep Mosel and Rheingau valleys of Germany, where it produces floral spritzy off-dry to medium wines packed with lime and apple fruit or, when affected by botrytis, honeyed apricot characteristics. In Alsace, Austria’s Wachau and Germany’s Franken there are some exhilarating, complex dry versions that work very well with Oriental fusion foods, as well as some stunning sweet versions. Some superb lively fruit-forward styles are cropping up in New Zealand, Constantia in South Africa and the cooler parts of Australia and California.